Despite LA Lakers star LeBron James return, Los Angeles has fallen to sixth place in the Western Conference. James missed 20 games because of a high-ankle sprain he injured on March 20. Unfortunately, he also left Sunday’s game against the Toronto Raptors midway through the fourth quarter. He didn’t return because of another ankle injury.
The Lakers are struggling. They have lost to the visiting Sacramento Kings on Friday and have now lost against the Toronto Raptors. Because of this, they now have 36-27 overall. Moreover, the No. 5 seed belongs to the Mavericks, who have the same record but hold the tiebreaker over the Lakers. With the way things are going, Los Angeles is in danger of dropping to a play-in game.
Lakers On Brink Of Falling Into Play-In Tournament
For punters who know how to bet on sports like basketball, you’ll probably gauge the Lakers’ performance. We can safely agree that if the regular season ended now, the defending NBA Champion Lakers would be close to the play-in tournament. And James is not happy about it. He stated in an interview, “Whoever came up with that s*** needs to be fired.”
This differs from his previous statement in May 2020, where he favoured the play-in tournament.
James stated, “One thing you can’t just do is go straight to the playoffs, because it discredits the 60-plus games that guys had fighting for that position.
“You got Portland. You got Memphis…New Orleans and Sacramento tinkering around there…so if there’s five or ten games left…why not those guys battle it out? Make them play each other all five games?”
Toronto Raptors Win Against the LA Lakers
The Los Angeles Lakers vs Toronto Raptors game was held at Staples Center. Two Raptors players stood out in their amazing performance, Kyle Lowry and Pascal Siakam. The former had a season-high 37 points with 11 assists. Siakam, on the other hand, finished with 39 points, 13 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocked shots on 15-for-26 field goals. This was the first time in franchise history that two Raptors players finished with 35 plus point double-doubles in the same game.
Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse stated, “Those two guys played great. They were really awesome. Pretty electrifying.”
On Sunday night’s game, the Lakers led by six points, 38-32, after the opening quarter, but this didn’t last long. The Raptors took control in the second quarter and got a 13-point lead into the halftime break. For the third quarter, the Raptors still led with 2 points. Los Angeles tried to take control in the fourth quarter, but the Raptors won with 114-121.
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